Newbie question

Today, we went to the hardware store and bought a lot of seeds of various kinds. In the past, we have bought live plants at nurseries. We're new to gardening, so didn't have great success, but want to try it again. Would it be better to just plant these seeds directly in prepared ground, or get some peat pots and give them a head start in a protected area. We are past the frost, or at least I believe so. I am in extreme SW Utah, not sure even of which zone, as it is listed differently in different books. Town: Toquerville. Elev. 3700'
Help appreciated. We're going to have some helpers tomorrow, and will run some new lines, and get the irrigation water system kicked off for this year.
Steve
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SteveB wrote:

You may be through the frost ( hard to believe in Utah now ), but things like tomatoes need really warm soil to get started. Certain plants do need a protected environment to get started.
One big advantage of planting indoors is that it gives you a longer growing season. Less chance of your plants getting caught by an early winter or late fall frost. Besides, it's lots of fun to watch them grow.
Sherwin
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SteveB wrote:

It depends on the type. Some are better planted in a seed tray and then planted out as seedlings, others go better sown direct. Check the instructions on the packet.
David
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wrote:

The jury may be out on this still. Tomatoes that come up volunteer seem to do as well as transplants, for me. Same for some herbs.
The big advantage to starting seedlings is being able to do something when you really want to be outside playing in the soil! ;-)
Watching and nurturing your babies in peat pots is satisfying and a learning experience as you are daliy watching their early development.
--
Charlie

"I'm not a vegetarian because I love animals. I'm a vegetarian because
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I wonder why? Perhaps transplant shock is a variable. Then there is rotation of the plant for sun light. I mark plants for transplant so the light is the same. Then there is the earth and nurturing or rotting about that says grow amongst all the dead and decaying. Surely gardening is a mystery. Plant a seed and it rots but may revolt and go for the light.
Bill

--
Garden in shade zone 5 S Jersey USA







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wrote:

Last year you posted a wonderful essay that may shed light upon this. Perhaps it is the rot and decay *and* life in the soil that starts a young plant on it's way in a more healthy and vigourous way than being started in a sterile medium that lacks the "mystery" of that which we scarce understand.
A rather long essay that few may take the time to ponder, but one well worth meditating upon.
http://www.regional.org.au/au/asssi/supersoil2004/keynote/lineskelly.htm
Thank you for calling this to mind, my friend.
--
Charlie, relaxing to the laconic sound of JJ Cale..."Strange Days"
from "Roll On"...new release.
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My one neophyte lesson is don't forget to harden off the seedlings before you plant them. I haven't had much luck with growing my own seedlings and replanting until last year. Every day that it would be reasonably warm and sunny, I put the seedlings outside and brought them back in at night. If you don't do this, the shock of being outdoors often kills the seedlings. Some things have been easy to plant outside in coastal RI. These include peas, beans, squash, pumpkins, swiss chard, sunflowers and flowers that self seed.
Jim

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